Effective Press Releases

For years, I’ve been critical of how many LP members write press releases and try to offer suggestions about how to write and distribute them. My friend and newly elected (as of yesterday) Alabama state LP chair Dick Clark just had one covered in his local paper. They didn’t just cover it, they printed it verbatim (with the exception of a minor change regarding his place of employment — which was requested by the candidate). Here’s the release:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Clark Campaign Picking Up Steam in District 79

AUBURN – The Dick Clark state legislative campaign in Alabama’s 79th district is picking up steam as campaign volunteers near 75% completion in ballot access petitioning efforts.

Clark is a 2004 Auburn University graduate who now works as a librarian [in Auburn]. His first bid for public office was a 2002 race for Alabama Public Service Commission, Place 1.

Clark states, “My reason for entering this race is that I believe that the 79th district is already fairly libertarian. It is time that the district’s voters have the option to vote for a real fiscal conservative who actually intends to reduce state taxes and expenditures and who will stand firm for the constitutional rights of his constituents.”

One campaign pledge by Clark is to accept no state compensation if elected. This pledge is intended to convince voters of his sincerity, explains Clark.

“I really want to reduce state spending, so we can start with my pay and work from there.”

Clark is unopposed in seeking the Libertarian Party of Alabama’s nomination this Saturday at the LPA state convention in Montgomery. More information is available at CitizenClark.com.

Dick Clark
Candidate, Alabama House of Representatives (District 79)
Auburn District Chairman, Libertarian Party of Alabama
http://www.CitizenClark.com

At this time, the Opelika-Auburn News hasn’t updated its online version, so I can’t hyperlink what they printed. Note that the release didn’t contain hype, was brief and to the point, and was written in such a manner as to make it easy for the local paper to print. It wasn’t a multiple page philosophical treatise. It didn’t even include the words theocrat, socialist, fascist or statist. It was written in a manner to be printed — which it was. Success rocks, but many LP press releases I see don’t.

15 Comments
  1. Good release, but what’s the point of saying he “works as a libertarian”? That sounds like a guy standing with a “will work for liberty” sign at the freeway off ramp.

    I would have thought that saying he works at an economics and public policy think tank in Auburn, or something along those lines, would have been more impressive?

  2. It got printed. That’s like a scoring in baseball (or sex). That’s the important part, from a Libertarian political perspective.

  3. Only bad thing in the release is that it mentioned being a real fiscal conservative but it didn’t mention anything about liberal social policies. This could lead some people to believe that Libertarians are more like conservatives or Republicans which is far from reality. Other than that, good release.

  4. Andy – the release was covered (on page two of the SUNDAY paper, I’ll add). In this case, adding the social liberal angle might have led to it not having been covered.

    While the role of a party maybe somewhat educational, the goal of a cadidate is to win.

  5. PC — The release was pretty good. I have no idea of her distribution lists or mechanisms, though.

  6. Only bad thing in the release is that it mentioned being a real fiscal conservative but it didn’t mention anything about liberal social policies. This could lead some people to believe that Libertarians are more like conservatives or Republicans which is far from reality. Other than that, good release.

    This is ALABAMA we’re talking about… I don’t think that’s going to matter.

  7. The reason that I used the term “real fiscal conservative” is that my opponent is the leading Republican in the AL House, and he claims to be a fiscal conservative. I’m just trying to get the point across to people that he isn’t what he says he is.

  8. I would also add to the story that the newspaper that ran the presser did not mention that it was a press release, and instead listed it as a “STAFF REPORT.” You cannot ask much more of a newspaper than to tell your voters exactly what you ask them to…

  9. PC,

    To answer your previous question, Loretta’s release (intended to get people to a press conference) was picked up, too.

    Success rocks!